Jail sentence for drunk Fareham man who set fire to his bed and jumped out window

JAILED Shane Preston
JAILED Shane Preston
Police sign for help at the scene of last night's accident

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A DRUNKEN man who set fire to his bed and then jumped out of the window has been jailed.

Shane Preston admitted arson at the Hinton Hotel in Catisfield Lane, Fareham, in August last year.

Portsmouth Crown Court was told how the 34-year-old, of no fixed abode, had split up with his partner in July and moved into the rented accommodation at the Hinton.

The court heard how on August 5 last year he had spent the day drinking before arriving back at his room and having an argument with the landlady about the rent.

Preston then went into his room and locked the door.

During the early hours of the following morning, there was a power cut and the fuse box was located in his room.

When people tried to get into his room, he behaved in an abusive manner and said that he had a knife, the court heard. He set fire to his bed and jumped out of the window, leaving the door to his room locked. Residents were evacuated.

Preston claimed that he couldn’t remember what had happened.

Sentencing him, Judge Sarah Munro QC said: ‘Reports show that you have a long history of alcohol abuse,

‘You drink so much that you behave erratically and have very little or no recollection once sober of how you behaved.

‘On August 5, you spent the day drinking and said you had drunk three and a half bottles of wine. It’s quite clear to me that you put a flame to your bed and when a serious fire started you jumped out of your window and left the door to your room locked.

‘The residents got out but serious damage was caused to the property.

‘I can see the extent of the damage that you caused.

‘I can only give you limited reduction on your plea. It must be an immediate prison sentence.’

Preston was sentenced to three years two months in prison.